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clonazepam during pregnancy

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  • clonazepam during pregnancy

    I am currently 5 weeks pregnant and have been taking clonazepam 0.5mg daily for panic disorder for about 3 years. I have my first visit with my obgyn this week. I found this site on baby center. I want to know if taking this medication will have have severe effects to the embryo. I know they say if the benefits outweighs the risks to continue. And with my panic attacks I cannot funtion normally without medication, I have tried in the past and I became sick and would not leave my house and would have multiple attacks a day. My worry is my obgyn will not know enough abut the medcation and will want me to stop cold Turkey , which I feel is worse to do and dangerous. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you.

  • #2
    Hi, thanks for your post.

    In the US, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists is the professional think tank that researches and creates practice guidelines for that speciality. Although their recommendations are suggestions instead of rules, a responsible OBGYN would really have to have a good reason to go against these guidelines.

    Regarding clonazepam, ACOG has made recommendations supporting its use in pregnancy. The full statement is linked at the bottom and highlights are quoted here. Clonazepam belongs to the benzodiazepine drug class.

    "Prenatal benzodiazepine exposure increased the risk of oral cleft, although the absolute risk increased by 0.01%...Maternal psychiatric illness, if inadequately treated or untreated, may result in poor compliance with prenatal care, inadequate nutrition, exposure to additional medication or herbal remedies, increased alcohol and tobacco use, deficits in mother–infant bonding, and disruptions within the family environment."

    Please call us at the InfantRisk Center if this has not completely answered your question.*(806)352-2519

    -James Abbey, MD